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Association Between Aluminum Exposure From Vaccines Before Age 24 Months and Persistent Asthma at Age 24 to 59 Months

To assess the association between cumulative aluminum exposure from vaccines before age 24 months and persistent asthma at age 24 to 59 months. A retrospective cohort study was conducted in the Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD). Vaccination histories were used to calculate cumulative vaccine-associated aluminum in milligrams (mg). The persistent asthma definition required one inpatient or 2 outpatient asthma encounters, and ?2 long-term asthma control medication dispenses. Cox proportional hazard models were used to evaluate the association between aluminum exposure and asthma incidence, stratified by eczema presence/absence. Adjusted hazard ratios (aHR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) per 1 mg increase in aluminum exposure were calculated, adjusted for birth month/year, sex, race/ethnicity, VSD site, prematurity, medical complexity, food allergy, severe bronchiolitis, and health care utilization. The cohort comprised 326,991 children, among whom 14,337 (4.4%) had eczema. For children with and without eczema, the mean (standard deviation [SD]) vaccine-associated aluminum�exposure was�4.07�mg (SD�0.60) and 3.98�mg (SD�0.72), respectively. Among children with and without eczema, 6.0% and 2.1%, respectively, developed persistent asthma. Among children with eczema, vaccine-associated aluminum was positively associated with persistent asthma (aHR 1.26 per 1 mg increase in aluminum, 95% CI 1.07, 1.49); a positive association was also detected among children without eczema (aHR 1.19, 95% CI 1.14, 1.25). In a large observational study, a positive association was found between vaccine-related aluminum exposure and persistent asthma. While recognizing the small effect sizes identified and the potential for residual confounding, additional investigation of this hypothesis appears warranted.

Authors: Daley, Matthew F; Klein, Nicola P; DeStefano, Frank; et al.

Acad Pediatr. 2023 Jan-Feb;23(1):37-46. Epub 2022-09-28.

PubMed abstract

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